France sets aside €300 billion for military in 2019-2025 budget plans
1 August 2018
While slashing wage levels and preparing deep cuts in basic social programs, French President Emmanuel Macron is forking over billions of euros to the super-rich and the military. On July 13, he promulgated the Military Planning Law (LPM) for 2019-2025, which will increase French military spending to 2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2025.
The military budget will increase €1.7 billion per year until 2022 and €3 billion per year starting in 2023. Total military expenditure over the period will be €300 billion. For 2018, it is €34.2 billion (1.82 percent of GDP), compared to €32.7 billion (1.77 percent of GDP) in 2017.
The increase in military spending underscores the fact that France is preparing for large-scale conflict amid growing tensions among the major world powers. Macron is also preparing to impose the draft for all young men and women, supposedly to bring the army closer to the people.
The military spending will go for:
* Increasing regularly planned funding of overseas wars, which will go from €650 million to €1.1 billion starting in 2020. It was €450 million in 2017.
* The acquisition of heavy weaponry for the army, including 100 modernised Leclerc tanks, 733 VBL light armoured vehicles, and 34 NH-90 helicopters.
* Buying 28 new Rafale fighter jets, 11 A330 MRTT tanker aircraft, and 11 A400M heavy transport planes.
* Building up France’s nuclear arsenal, with spending going from €3.9 billion in 2017 to €6 billion per year in 2025. This is a 65 percent increase compared to the previous LPM budget.
* Investing €4.6 billion in intelligence and €1.6 billion in military innovation, with the creation of 1,500 and 1,000 new jobs,…